michael bradley edinburgh

Michael Bradley - Edinburgh Head Coach

Edinburgh Rugby head coach Michael Bradley has named four starting debutants in the side’s first pre-season match of the 2011/12 season against Sale Sharks this Friday. The fixture is Bradley’s first in charge of the capital club and marks a return to Edgeley Park for summer signings Sean Cox (back-row) and Chris Leck (scrum-half), while young inside backs Gregor Hunter (19) and Matt Scott (20) start at stand-off and inside-centre respectively. Outside backs, Ben Cairns, Simon Webster and Tim Visser add familiarity and experience to a back-line which also features 21-year-old prospect, Tom Brown, who’ll make his first start at full-back having played five times as a substitute last season. Bradley said: “The players have been excellent throughout pre-season and have shown full commitment both in training and to the values of the club. The boys have kept their heads down and done all that we’ve asked of them, sometimes more, and I hope that this will be evident in our performance on Friday. “The side selected presents an excellent opportunity for some of the many promising young players at the club to experience rugby at a very high level, but they’ve trained well and their selection is deserved.” In the forwards, hooker Steven Lawrie will make his first appearance since returning to the club from Doncaster Knights and will be flanked by Kyle Traynor and Lewis Niven. Argentine internationalist Esteban Lozada will partner Steven Turnbull in the second-row while Struan Dewar and Roddy Grant complete the back-row – the latter stepping in as captain in the absence of scrum-half Greig Laidlaw who is on Scotland duty. The side are poised to blood a further three youngsters from the bench, namely Grant Gilchrist (21), Hamish Watson (19) and Alex Black (21) at lock, back-row and scrum-half respectively. After the Sale Sharks match, Edinburgh Rugby will return to Murrayfield for their second, and final, pre-season fixture against Alan Tait’s Newcastle Falcons on Friday 26 August, to which U18s can attend for free. Reflecting on the two pre-season matches, Bradley added: “Our aim is to give as many players as possible the chance to play in the next two matches in order to reintroduce them to the physicality of professional rugby and to make the strongest possible start to the PRO12 season at home against Cardiff the following Friday.” Edinburgh Rugby team v Sale Sharks, Edgeley Park (Friday 19 August, KO 7.45pm) 15 Tom Brown 14 Simon Webster

13 Ben Cairns

12 Matt Scott

11 Tim Visser 10 Gregor Hunter

9 Chris Leck 1 Kyle Traynor

2 Steven Lawrie

3 Lewis Niven

4 Esteban Lozada

5 Steven Turnbull

6 Sean Cox

7 Roddy Grant CAPTAIN

8 Struan Dewar Substitutes

16 Jack Gilding

17 Andrew Kelly

18 Grant Gilchrist

19 Hamish Watson

20 Alex Black

21 John Houston

22 Phil Godman

23 Lee Jones Other substitutes: John Cox (Currie), James Fleming, Dougie Fife, Andrew Turnbull, Sep Visser (Boroughmuir)